Bob Walker and Frances Mooney hold two of their pets at home in Spotsylvania.

Are your walls are crying out for an 8-by-10 framed portrait of your cat or dog—especially one taken with artistic color gel lighting effects?

Now you can get one, and support the Fredericksburg SPCA as well, by participating in a photography benefit hosted this weekend by photographer Bob Walker.

Walker and his wife Frances Mooney have made their love of cats—and dogs, too—known to the world since the 1980s. They remodeled their San Francisco home with an extensive series of elevated “cat-walks,” floor-to-ceiling scratching posts and tunnels through walls.

“The Cats’ House” become world-famous and was featured on HGTV and Animal Planet as well as in People magazine, the Washington Post and the New York Times.

“I became known as the ‘Paw-father’ of the pet environmental enrichment movement,” Walker joked.

In 2013, he and Mooney packed their possessions—including their eight cats—into a motor home and moved east, eventually settling in Spotsylvania County.

Walker, who has worked as a professional event and portrait photographer for more than 30 years, wanted to hold the benefit for the Fredericksburg SPCA because, “They’re a wonderful organization finding homes for our area cats and dogs.”

He is offering 15-minute photo sessions Saturday and Sunday at OddBox Studios on Wolfe Street in downtown Fredericksburg.

The cost is $40 per session and clients will receive one 8-by-10 print, two 5-by-7 prints and five digital files for sharing on social media. Up to two “fur kids”—two dogs, two cats or one dog and one cat—can come to each session.

The SPCA will receive 100 percent of the proceeds, Walker said.

The secret to successful pet portraiture is patience, he said.

“You have to take a lot of pictures and know your subject,” Walker said. “You have to give them time to express themselves. Their inner dog or cat has to come out.”

Walker suggests that pet parents bring along all their pet’s favorite toys and treats and to have two human family members assisting.

“So, if possible, the person the pet reacts most to can be behind my shoulder,” he said.

Walker said our pets have increasingly become members of our families. Making them the subject of professional portrait photography is “the least we can do for them.”

“I think the cats and dogs are putting something in the water,” he joked. “They have us wrapped around their little paws.”

You can reserve your session at

Adele Uphaus-Conner: 540/735-1973 @flsadele

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